Former Belarusian leader Stanislav Shushkevich has claimed a historic 1991 document that proclaimed the death of the Soviet Union is missing from the archives.
He discovered it was gone while working on his memoirs. He believes it has been stolen, with the intention of selling it to a collector.
On 8 December, 1991, Mr Shushkevich hosted Russian president Boris Yeltsin and Ukrainian leader Leonid Kravchuk for secret talks. The trio signed a deal declaring “the USSR has ceased to exist as a subject of international law and geopolitical reality”.